Denver’s newest community marketplace, Mondo Market, opened its doors at Stanley Marketplace earlier this month. The new location at 2501 Dallas Street marks the second storefront for owners Nicolas Farrell and Michael Davis, who started their business with online distribution company Mondo Food and expanded to their first brick-and-mortar at The Source in 2013.
The community feel is what first drew Farrell and Davis to the Source, and subsequently to the Stanley, for their shops. The duo traveled extensively around the globe before founding Mondo Food in 2009. According to Farrell, their experiences at open-air marketplaces in many different countries inspired them to create something similar in Colorado. “These markets have been around for a hundred years," he explains. "It’s not anything new; we’re not doing anything special, other than that it’s somewhere that doesn’t have a lot of what we do.”
The new Mondo Market builds upon the success of the online shop and the Source location, offering what Farrell describes as a “curated selection” of specialty groceries and charcuterie. Where this bodega-style shop departs from Mondo Food’s artisan grocery roots is in the addition of made-to-order sandwiches and pasta dishes and a deli counter stocked with freshly prepared foods.
“We wanted something like this from day one; we just had to start somewhere,” says Farrell.
Of particular interest to pasta enthusiasts will be Mondo Market’s in-house pasta brand, Little Noodle. Pasta is offered in a variety of shapes and flavors, ranging from squid ink to beet, that will change regularly. The secret, according to Farrell, is the use of vegetable juice pressed in-house, as opposed to vegetable powders.
“The idea is about extruding pasta in-house, changing the flavors up, and allowing our customers to choose their own destination, so to speak,” explains Farrell. “With Little Noodle, we have the opportunity to work with chefs and do small-batch pastas and customize it, which people are already getting excited about.”
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While building Mondo's food menus, Davis and Farrell focused on offering quality meals that won’t break the bank.
“It’s very important for us for you to be able to come and eat [for] under $15," Farrell adds. "We also want you to try different products, especially for lunch. That’s why a turkey sandwich is on the menu, and I laugh about it, but in a world in which something has to be so grandiose and complex, it’s hard to find a good damn turkey sandwich that’s less than $15.”
Mondo Market is open daily from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. inside Aurora's Stanley Marketplace.